Sunday, November 14, 2010

Donnybrook crew off season

Here are Kevin, Bob, and Mike together while visiting Todd in Muncie, Indiana. Off season isn't as glamorous as sailing season, is it?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Approach to Crowley's

Today was the last day of the season for Donnybrook, the weather was perfect! We were able to sail the entire way to Crowley's from Belmont Harbor. Bob, Kevin, and Capt. Kyle had a very good day. Next, after we dock, is to take off sails, prepare the standing rigging for mast stepping, and change the oil.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Return To Belmont

We arrived back at Belmont around 5:00 am central Saturday after leaving at 3:00 eastern Friday, about 15 hours on the water including swim.
We sailed for the first 3 hours until the wind died and motored the rest of the way. We had a westerly headwind the second half so only motored at around 5 knots and 2500 rpms.
The highlight of the trip was a sunset swim. We swam 20 miles southwest of Saugatuck in 200+ feet of water. The lake was the warmest of the trip--it felt nearly 80. With mask I could make out the prop from two boat lengths. Looking down the water was an intense shady of midnight blue.
We took all the safety precautions we could. Each swimmer had a PFD with him. One person stayed with the boat while people were in the water. While motoring at night we treated it like the race: Everyone wore a PFD with light and was tethered to the boat.
More including lots of pictures to come.


From Grand Haven we sailed the 20+ miles to Saugatuck. There was a small craft advisory because of 10-20 knot NW winds and 3-5 foot waves but A LOT more fun than on the trip to Frankfurt. We sailed with only the genoa and regularly reached 8+ knots surfing down waves.
We stayed at Tower Marine in Douglas which is one of the nicest marina's on the trip. It's clean and friendly with laundry facilities. It's across the lake from Saugatuck fin Douglas but easy access via water taxi, Interurban bus, or regular taxi.
We left Friday afternoon to return home early Saturday.
More about Saugatuck as time permits.

Grand Haven

More to follow on Grand Haven. We had a fantastic time at the Coast Guard Days carnival and good drinks served by Pete at Rosebud.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


It's a neat, historic town on the river.

Cruising to Manistee

After careful consideration, we decided to continue on. Arcadia is only 8 miles from Frankfurt and all agreed we could make it at least that far no matter the conditions.
We found small waves and a light wind from the southwest, right on the nose. When we reached Arcadia we decided to motor on.
We motor, however there are two other sailboats sailing with us. They headed the same direction and tacking back and fourth but aren't making the same progress as we are motoring.

The Long Sail to Frankfurt

It was an overcast morning with light showers at South Manitou Island Monday morning. We raised anchor after nine and headed toward our next destination, Frankfurt, Mi. The forecast was for southwest winds in the teens and 1-3 foot waves (near shore) or 4-6 foot waves (open water). It was much worse.

We had 20+ knot winds most of the way with 5-7 foot waves and a period of 4-8 footers. We saw several 10+ foot waves. You know a wave is big when you stand in the cockpit and look up as it goes by. What should have taken 5 hours took. It was a miserable ride.

To me, sailing in rough weather is like suffering through a hangover. If you sail (drink) enough you're bound to encounter it. You hate it while suffering and swear of sailing (drinking). As soon as it passes, you think it wasn't so bad and start to look forward to your next sail (drink).

We finally made it to Frankfurt. The only casualty was the CYC Cruising Sail Fleet burgee which came came untied from the flag halyard and is now in Lake Michigan somewhere.

I talked to several other boaters who were on the water today and all agreed the forecast did not accurately predict the weather on Lake Michigan. One group was trying to sail from Charlevoix to Door county and was diverted.

We had a nice dinner and had a few drinks before bed. While recounting the day's experience, each of us disliked different parts. Brian was fine the first half but started to feel queasy the second half. Dan hated evry minutes but shut up, venting heavily after we arrived. Bob tried to study but didn't get much done. I hated the first part but found encouragement after finding shelter behind Point Betsie and again after seeing the Frankfurt lighthouse.

A Beneteau 36.7 was motoring with us and, from watching him, the motion wasn't as severe as it felt. The reality is none of us enjoyed the sail down.

Tuesday we'll decide if we continue on or contine to recover.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

South Manitou sunset

Tomorow we continue south. Now we enjoy our position.
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View from the harbor

Brian, Bob, and Dan walk along the beach at South Manitou Island. Donnybrook is anchored, farthest right in this picture.
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Donnybrook at anchor...

As we paddle towards the South Manitou Island beach in Samman.

Samman on the beach...

While Bob and I wait for Dan and Brian to return. Donnybrook is anchored in the background, farthest boat to the right.
Samman is our 8.5 foot Tropik/Bombard Aero inflatable tender. When not used it's deflated, rolled up, and stored under the V-berth.
We hiked nearly 8 miles round trip, across South Manitous Island to the 500 year old old growth ceder forest then beyond to the dunes. On the way back we passed the old school house and some of the farms.
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View from the other Side

This is the South Manitou Island harbor from the dunes on the west side of the island. Dan, Bob, and I hiked the 6 miles from Donnybrook to the dunes.
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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Race Results

We finished late, but finished. Our official finish time was Tuesday at 04:07:10. We were the last boat in the cruising division to finish but corrected above one section 2 and one section 1 boat. We were 15 of 16 finishing boats (18 started) in Section 2 and 35 of 37 (40 started) in the cruising division.

With the radar/genoa problems we had we lost about 5 hours. We lost another couple of hours with spinnaker problems, solved by removing the dousing sock. If we had those 7 hours back we would've finished top 3 in Cruising 2 and top 5 in the division. Such is racing.

The crew is happy with outcome. We sailed well and executed maneuvers (i.e. reefing) without excessive stress. We had a strategy and executed to it. The weather was beautiful and we had some of the best sailing on Donnybrook I've ever experienced. There is nothing like being on a broad reach at 7+ knots with a flat boat and no waves. Cooking below was as smooth as cooking at dock!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Race's Last Sunset

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Mac Race Day 4

I write this 15 miles southeast of Gray's Reef. We are reaching under Big Blue and will gybe shortly for the approach.
We decided to pass west of the Manitou's because of the wind direction. With the light southwest wind and our poor down wind performance, we wanted to keep moving and avoid previous race's mistakes of getting stuck too far east. We also didn't want to have wind blocked by the island.
It was slow sailing around Fox Island. Jake, Megan, Dan and I swam as Mike sailed at 2 knots and Roxray napped.

We sailed north through the night then gybed east at Fox Island. It has been a beautiful spinnaker reach.
If winds hold we should finish around 3:00 AM.

Megan counted 35 boats around us.

Mac Race Days 2 and 3

Friday night was rain, 6 hours work. Jake, Megan, and Roxray's watch was during the rain. They kept the boat sailing well and we continued excellent progress.
Saturday we continuned our strategy of sailing north as soon as possible until the wind shift to northwesterlies. We wanted to broad reach across Lake Michigan, Donnybrook's fastest point of sail.
The wind shifted mid afternoon. It looked like our strategy was perfect until it continued to shift to the northeast. We were beating into winds in the high teens. We settled into a single reef in the main and genoa and sailing about 60 degrees vs. Our desired 30 degrees. We made good speed, low to mid 6 knots.
The wind subsided and we removed the reefs. We continued at 6-7 knots, tacking a few times to find the best angle for VMG and sea state.
During one of the tacks, during a spectacular sunrise, the genoa tore! Thanks to Roxray's quick thinking we raised the storm jib to continue forward progress, this time at 3-4 knots. As the wind subsided we sailed at 1/3 the speed we were capable of.
When the wind neared zero we decided to drop the genoa to investigate. There is a 3 foot tear at radar level. We made plans for Megan to patch with the sail repair kit on-board.
While looking for the cause we found the radome had dislodged and the metal shelf made a very sharp edge which sliced the sail! Jake went up the mast and found only one of 4 screws was holding it in and that was only finger tight.
Jake went up the mast and found only 1 of 4 screws. We went through spare parts and found, mysteriously, the 3 missing bolts! Our theory is the yacht yard failed to install 3 of the bolts. Jakes assessment was that if installed properly there was no way for the bolts to work lose, The ramaining acrew had the washer and lock washer in place but it wan't tight.
The wind picked up and we continued under "Big Blue", our Michigan Spinnaker.
We cointinued at 6+ knots to the Manitous and sunset when the wind dropped. We opted to go ouside the Manitous and, as of Monday morning, passed between North Manitou island and Fox Island.
Our ground support tells us we're 10-20 miles behind the main section 2 fleet,. I estimate we lost 15-20 miles due to the torn genoa. If the forecast is accurate we'll be sailing the rest of the race with Big Blue anyway.

Mac Race Day 1

This is a rewrite of my original message. It was lost in posting.

The race started under idea conditions for Donnybrook! Jake, Megan, Roxray, Dan, Mike, and I left dock around 1:00 after an 11:30 boat call. Winds were perfect for Donnybrook, southwest in the mid teens.

We started with a broad reach and sailed north at hull speed or faster for the first 3+ hours, with a maximum of 8.5 knots.

Late evening we witnessed one of the most awesome sights any of us had seen: a wall cloud form and race over the top of us. We furled the genoa and put in a double reef. Winds were relatively mild but it reinforced our healthy respect for mother nature.

The rest of the night was spent watching amd guessing where the thunderstorns would be. We got rain but missed any direct hits.

The lightning we had was the most incredible I've ever seen. A line of thunderstorns was horizon to horizon south of us--the same storns that caused the flooding in Chicago.

During storms we had several bolts directly overhead splintering out like spider webs. I saw at least one bolt hit the water several miles away. It seemed to leave an orange glow where it stfuck.

This was an incredible start to the race.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Mac Practice Sail

Saturday was an ideal day for our Mac practice sail. I was worried about winds being too light with the forecast--south winds 6 knots becoming variable. Instead, we ended up with south winds in the teens, building to nearly 20, then some sustained 30 knot winds with gusts over 40 in a thunderstorm. Over the 6 hours on the water we experienced about everything the Mac offers except for dead calm.

Here you see part of my crew. From left to right: Jake, our newest crew, Mike, Megan, and Roxray. Brian joined us for the dock-side briefing but had family obligations in the afternoon. Danny is in Florida until 7/20.

We left under clear skies with cumulus clouds building. Several developed rain. We dodged several and only had a few minutes of showers, until we saw this. We watched the rainfall build from a few wisps of rain to the black downpour you see here, to a large black downpour that completely obscured the skyline. This picture was taken from about 10 miles east of Belmont harbor and about 20 minutes before we got rained on. There were as many as 3 storms around us. We could track their movement on the radar as the rain echos were very clear.

This is another storm. When the sun shines on them they're beautiful, certainly not as scary as the previous picture, but just as powerful.

The "funnel cloud" to the right is a closeup of the center of the picture to the left. We could see it twist, grow and shrink.

All of us were admiring the rainbow and clouds. A white haze began to form on the water maybe a mile away. I was thinking it was fog and joked that it could be a "white squall." The worst to that point had passed.
Jake yelled "Very strong wind in 10 seconds!" We were focusing on this view to port but didn't see the wind coming toward our bow. We'd previously taken the main down but were caught with our genoa flying. It took three of us to bring in the genoa. Jake saw 39 knots on the hand held wind meter.

It looks like a rainbow with some wispy white clouds. From our experience we learned that we were seeing the downdraft of the storm spread out. It was menacing and black until the sun shone through turning it white. We let our guard down because it was amazing to look at.
The winds were dangerously strong. In fact a small sailboat, it looked like a J-22, washed against the wall at Montrose harbor.

After it passed we were rewarded by a spectacular sunset!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Seamanship and Safety Skills

The Chicago Yacht Club race to Mackinac Seamanship and Safety Skills Checklist for Prospective Competitors is an excellent list of skills any crusing or racing sailor should have.

If you have mastered the competencies listed, you are ready for about anything Lake Michigan can throw at you.

VMG Primer

A key to this year's Mac is to maximum VMG (Velocity Made Good). This means finding the fastest combination of boat speed and angle to the wind. We'll work on this during our next Beer Can race and during Saturday's practice sail.

This article, edited, from http://www.endeavourowners.com/dscsn/handling/perform.html, is a good description of VMG.

What is VMG?VMG is velocity-made-good, sometimes referred to as speed-made-good. Here is a simple example of VMG. Your boat is going at five knots, according to the knotmeter against a current of two knots. Your boat's VMG, or speed over the ground, is three knots. You turn the boat around and your knotmeter still reads five knots, but the current is now pushing you along at an extra two knots, so your VMG is seven knots.

Sail a mile or more to leeward. Set the GPS GOTO function to that mark. Scroll to the GPS screen that reads VMG. Now start beating toward the mark. Try various course angles, sheet tensions, and genoa lead and traveler settings, adjusting your sail trim to suit.

Dedicate a crewmember to monitoring the GPS, recording the course, sail trim, and wind speed, and the VMG resulting from each change. You will soon see which combination of course and sail trim results in your boat's best speed made good to weather in that particular wind/wave combination. Your speed potential will probably vary quite a bit with different wind/wave combinations and course angles. Does your boat do better while pinching or footing? Within a beat, pinching is sailing a little closer to the wind, while footing is sailing a little less close to the wind?

Do the same thing downwind, to find the best gybing angles for your boat and sail combination. Get a mile or two directly upwind of a GPS waypointed mark. Start sailing directly to that mark with your usual downwind sail combination. Note your speed, then come up 10 degrees and check the GPS for the change in VMG.

Even though you are sailing slightly away from the mark, the chances are your VMG has improved, meaning that you are moving more quickly toward your destination, even though you are traveling more distance and will have to gybe to make the mark. Come up some more and again note the change in VMG. Keep experimenting with VMG and make notes of what angles work best.

Reprinted from the America Online Sailing Forum Newsletter
GSTDPeterO is Peter O. Allen, Sr., a retired association executive from Rochester, New York. He has sailed and raced dinghies and various racer/cruisers for more than 30 years. He is a US Sailing Certified Club Race Officer. He and his wife currently sail Canto, a '68 Pearson Wanderer, as well as a Laser. He has been designated as the principal race officer for the Sunfish Pan Am Games Trials, to be held in Rochester July 9-11.

July 3 Sail

The 4th of July weekend was a perfect weekend for Donnybrook. Capt. Kyle, Conor, and Emmet had a guy's night on the boat Friday. Kyle went there straight after work. Before the boys arrived he was able to fix the radar using the parts Bob provided.

Karen fixed a fantastic dinner on the boat before leaving the boys for the night. Saturday Kyle was up early tuning the mast. When Conor and Emmet woke up, they helped to wash the boat.

Karen came by for breakfast at the club then Mike came by for our sail. We sailed under genoa alone. The weather was perfect for sailing, south west winds at 10-15 knots and flat seas. Away from shore it was 70 degrees and cloudless. On shore it was in the mid 80s.

We sailed about 10 miles northeast before sailing down to the playpen (anchorage off of Chicago Avenue). We anchored and swam before returning to Belmont. Overall we covered 25+ miles and were on the water for 7 hours, including and hour at anchor.

This picture shows how clear the sky was and the maze of lines that make up the lazy jacks.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Sunday Sail

Sunday afternoon was perfect sailing! The morning rain, heat, and humidity gave way to cooler, dry air.

Conor and Emmet were with us so for simplicity we sailed under partially reefed genoa alone. With the west winds in the high teens and flat seas we sailed at hull speed plus (7-8 knots) on a reach south to Northerly Island then back by the Chicago Lighthouse and through the harbor entrance, where this picture was taken.

We anchored at the playpen for several hours for a late lunch and a swim before returning home at sunset.

Capt. Kyle, Karen, Conor, Emmet, Mike, Megan and Jeremy all had a great time!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

More Post Storm Pictures

Here are some more pictures. There were a lot of people taking pictures from their balconies. They flashes looked liked fireflies on the build.

This is a quick and dirty panoramic shot stitched together from 3 pictures.

The texture of the clouds was amazing. This failed to capture the color...

There was a double rainbow to the south! One was horizon to horizon!

After the Storm

It was amazing on Donnybrook after the storms passed! This is what it loked like from the foredeck. Lightning bolts were flashing overhead and it was dark to the south while the sky was golden to the north and west. The air was cool and dry. This picture doesn't do it justice.

Thunderstorm Lifecycle

All these storms got me thinking about why thunderstorms happen. I found these slides from a quick Google search on "thunderstorm life cycle." The below slides are from Severe Storm Spotter Training (http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/mso/train/img0.html from the National Weather Service Western Region Headquarters).

Below is my interpretation of the different stages:

Developing Stage: These are the white, fluffy clouds you see on warm summer days. They are formed by convection during sunlight hours. There's little convection over southern Lake Michigan in the summer which is why you typically don't see fluffy clouds over the lake. In the summer you do see them on the northern part of the lake where the air and lake temperatures are closer or the lake is warmer than the air. You see them over the lake in the fall when the lake is warm and air cool. You also see them off the east coast of Florida over the Gulf Stream (relatively warm water).

Slide 19

Mature Stage: These are the storms to watch out for. Scattered storms are caused by convection that lifts the moist air high enough to cause condensation into rain. Lines of thunderstorms are caused by a cool front which lifts the warm air into the atmosphere. The warmer the air and faster moving the cold front, the higher the lift. Falling rain creates the wind gust, multiplied by the speed of the cold front. That is why a fast moving cold front creates short lived but potentially violent storms.

The updraft may change or reverse the prevailing wind, hence the phrase "calm before the storm."

Slide 21

Dissipating Stage: The sloppy end of a storm. You might see the "anvil" falling over on itself. A cold front will move it along replacing it with relatively cooler, drier air. I've observed the largest raindrops are just before the rain stops.

Slide 23

I find weather fascinating to watch. When sailing you learn to appreciate the subtle changes to the weather. If you understand and can predict what will happen next, you'll have more confidence about uncontrollable weather and can appreciate it's amazing power and beauty!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Longest Day Off

You can still get sunburn on a day like this! I took Monday off to enjoy the summer solstice. The forecast was for showers and thunderstorms all day. It rained for a few minutes in the morning then a real gully buster near midnight.
This was a perfect day off: Some boat maintenance (a past due pump-out) in the morning, a solo sail with lunch on the water, and finally a nap back at dock followed by washing the topsides. A nice rum drink (thanks, Megan!) ended my day on the boat. The only thing I didn't get to do was swim. Maybe Wednesday.
I ended the longest day of the year at home with the family and dinner.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Storm on the Lake

This is the back side of Friday's severe thunderstorm. It was over Michigan when this picture was taken two hours after it passed.
The data below is from the Harrison-Dever water crib about 3 miles east of Chicago. Note winds increased from 8 to 48 knots with a 66 knot gust in just 10 minutes (1620 to 1645)!
Also not the temperature dropped 20 degrees at the same time. There was a definite calm before the storm.
The worst only lasted 30 minutes then conditions were perfect for sailing with a nice breeze and flat lake.
------------Previous 3 Hours-------------
---------CDT- kts kts deg deg F
2010 169 1745 17.24 20.76 257 70.7
2010 169 1740 19.25 24.77 262 70.6
2010 169 1735 22.16 26.67 275 70.6
2010 169 1730 23.97 31.05 280 70.4
2010 169 1725 26.01 34.10 287 70.9
2010 169 1720 25.37 32.19 283 71.2
2010 169 1715 23.85 32.39 283 70.7
2010 169 1710 22.06 27.82 285 70.5
2010 169 1705 25.19 29.92 284 70.1
2010 169 1700 26.13 31.43 286 69.5
2010 169 1655 28.87 38.49 284 69.3
2010 169 1650 29.06 38.86 282 68.7
2010 169 1645 34.55 42.11 288 67.0
2010 169 1640 40.32 48.39 288 65.8
2010 169 1635 43.74 54.86 285 66.3
2010 169 1630 48.54 66.87 280 69.4
2010 169 1625 15.67 46.68 284 85.3
2010 169 1620 8.10 11.24 228 86.1
2010 169 1615 15.14 19.62 211 85.5
2010 169 1610 13.67 17.71 211 86.9

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Monday, May 24, 2010

At rest in Belmont

Donnybrook is ready for the season! Here she is waiting patiently for Captain and crew to take her into the lake to play. The water pump has been replaced and she runs at the proper temperature at the dock (15 minutes in gear, 1500 RPM, temperature at 160).
My friend Richard and I were talking about the perfect summer day: 90's on shore, 70's on the water, and swimming in the lake! Hopefully the early hot weather brings lake swimming earlier than later.
Beer Can racing starts this Wednesday. Instead of the race, a cruise to finish tuning the rig and dial in trim might be a better use of time. I bet Wilde's still has half price beer Wednesdays!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Ship on the river

This is the view from Donnybrook while at Crowley's. Notice the lake steamer passing under the 95th Ave bridge. I saw at least 4 large ships Friday and Sunday. Spring is a busy time for shipping.
See www.boatnerd.com for more on Great Lakes shipping.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Return to Belmont!

Saturday was a beautiful day for a sail. Not beautiful as in sunny and 80, but beautiful as spectacular clouds with contrasting shades of grey and blue, and spots of brilliant turquoise water where sun rays fell between clouds.
It was cold--Kevin's thermometer said it was 40 degrees. At one point Todd and I got pelted by ice pellets for several minutes while Kevin, Mike, and Roxray were below relaxing.
Leaving Crowley's was uneventful. Once on the lake we sailed at hull speed for the first hour under a single reefed main and headsail. Waves were 4-6 feet with a lot of water on the bow.
Wind was off the nose and blowing in the high teens. We made it as far north as Navy Pier before tacked and sailed the 3 miles back to the Chicago Harbor light house. From there we motored back to Belmont Harbor.
The only problem was a failed water pump. Todd and I heard a sick mechanical grinding while motoring through the north break wall entrance. I was checking out the engine when I asked Todd to back the throttle down, which killed the engine a hundred yards to windward of the break wall. Fearing the worst I sprinted to the bow to ready the anchor. Todd restarted the engine averting disaster
Further investigation revealed the water pump failed leaving bearings and anti-freeze in the engine compartment. Thankfully it didn't freeze up and the temperature remained normal. A new pump is on order and should be installed this week.
Next, a lot of cleaning and figuring out what to do with the exterior teak.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday Work

This is what a happy crew looks like! We're making some good progress... More to follow.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Spring Work

Spring work is here! Only three more weekend days of work left. Mike and Roxray are in for Sunday. I can use help the following weekend.
Planned for this Sunday, April 25:
  • Clean the interior and replace the cushions
  • Clean lifelines
  • Rebuild the boom outhaul
  • Clean lazarettes and tighten screws
  • Fix engine instruments
  • Charge batteries
  • De-winterize the fresh water system
For Saturday and Sunday, May 1 and 2:
  • Wash, polish, and wax (3-4 coats) the topsides
  • Wash and wax the hull (1 or 2 coats)
  • Bottom paint
  • Wash and wax the mast
  • Install the rub rail
The boat goes in the water Friday, May 7 and we bring her home to Belmont Harbor Saturday, May 8!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Crew At Work

This is Bosun Brian decluttering Donnybrook. It's amazing how much stuff is brought on board and forgotten about. Two trash bags so far...

Train to Crowley's

This is the view from the Van Buren station as Mike and I boarded the Metra Electric to 93rd/South Chicago. The station is an easy 10 minute walk to Crowley's.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Donnybrook in 2003

This is Donnybrook as taken in late 2003 by either Boat Pix or Yacht Shots (I don't remember which). The title picture of this blog is from a Boat Pix picture I purchased after the 101st Mac race in 2009.
The quality of my 2009 Boat Pix is fantastic and is a bargain when you consider the high quality camera equipment needed produce a 16x20 print taken from a small helicopter. It's cheap if you ever priced renting a helicoper with pilot to take pictures of friends' boats.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Favorite Links

Here are some links courtesy of Danny Pinnell

i550 Sport Boat: A high performance home-built sport boat.

Sailing Anarchy: The web's leading sailing site.

Check Little Things : A good reminder that if something doesn't look right, fix it before it becomes a big problem!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Ship by Crowley's

This ship (integrated tug and barge actually) was heading into the lake this afternoon. This picture was taken from Crowley's Harbor Master shed on the Calumet River. Behind the railway lift bridge is the Chicago Skyway bridge.

Donnybrook last fall

This is Donnybrook at Crowley's last fall before her winter neighbors moved in.

Entry #1: March 20, 2010

Spring is here, although you can't tell by today's weather (32 and snow). Yesterday it was 71 and Sunny. That's life in Chicago at this transitional time of year.

This is the view from the helm inside Crowley's inside unheated (or cold storage as I call it) storage shed. There was more activity at the yard than I expected due to the weather. I saw people working on 4 or 5 other boats.

Today Mike and I began topping off battery charge and assessing spring projects. Other than normal spring washing and waxing, rubrail replacement and outhaul upgrade are on the list. We removed the boom end caps to remove the outhaul.